In the Shadow of Vesuvius: A Life of Pliny (Hardback)
  • In the Shadow of Vesuvius: A Life of Pliny (Hardback)
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In the Shadow of Vesuvius: A Life of Pliny (Hardback)

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£20.00
Hardback 320 Pages / Published: 30/05/2019
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Ash spewed into the sky. All eyes were on Vesuvius. Pliny the Elder sailed towards the phenomenon. A teenage Pliny the Younger waited. His uncle did not come back.

In a dazzling new literary biography, Daisy Dunn introduces Pliny the Younger, the survivor who became a Roman lawyer, senator, poet, collector of villas, curator of drains, and representative of the Emperor. He was confidant and friend to the great and good, an unparalleled chronicler of the Vesuvius catastrophe, and eyewitness to the terror of Emperor Domitian.

The younger Pliny was adopted by his uncle, admiral of the fleet and author of the Natural History, an extraordinary compendium of knowledge and the world's first full-length encyclopaedia. The younger Pliny inherited his uncle's notebooks and carried their pearls of wisdom with him down the years.

Daisy Dunn breathes vivid life back into the Plinys. Reading from the Natural History and the Younger Pliny's Letters, she resurrects the relationship between the two men to expose their beliefs on life, death and the natural world in the first century. Interweaving their work, and positioning the Plinys in relation to the devastating eruption, Dunn's biography is a celebration of two outstanding minds of the Roman Empire, and their lasting influence on the world thereafter.
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Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
ISBN: 9780008211097
Number of pages: 320
Weight: 270 g
Dimensions: 240 x 159 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

`A fascinating, compelling and excellent biography of the two great Plinys of Ancient Rome, as well as a celebration of nature, a study of literature and the human soul, and a lens into Roman society itself ... This work of both scholarship and entertainment, arranged in Plinyesque seasons rather than strict chronology, is a delight that befits their high standards.' Simon Sebag Montefiore, Author of Jerusalem and The Romanovs

`Starts with an erupting volcano - and then gets more exciting. A wonderfully rich, witty, insightful and wide-ranging portrait of the two Plinys ... and their world.' Sarah Bakewell, author of How to Live: A Life of Montaigne and At the Existentialist Cafe

'Daisy Dunn's book is an absolute delight. Meticulously researched and beautifully crafted, it shines a clear beam of light into the private lives of Pliny the Elder and Younger.' Giles Milton

Praise for Daisy Dunn
`An amazing mixture of pacey biography and first rate literary analysis. Rome's most famous bad boy poet comes alive as never before. Stunning' Boris Johnson

`A haunting reminder of how little humanity has changed over two thousand years and a moving introduction to the greatest love poet of all time' Robert Harris

`Dunn's beautifully written biography is a superb portrait of this most human of poets who leaps to life, hating and loving as ferociously as ever, before our 21st-century eyes' Sunday Times

`Dunn does a brilliant job of recreating Rome in the first century BC ... This is a triumph of modern classical scholarship made accessible through lucid writing' Independent

`Lyrical, playful and startlingly original ... Breathes extraordinary new life into the classical world. An unforgettable journey into the high art and low life of ancient Rome' Dan Jones

'Imaginative and learned, Dunn has written the perfect introduction to Catullus and his world' Tom Holland

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